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Extraordinary Lives Start With a Great Catholic Education

Specialist High Skills Major




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2023-2024 Specialist High Skills Major (SHSM) Programs offered at DPCDSB Schools

What is a Specialist High Skills Major (SHSM)?

The Specialist High Skills Majors (SHSM) Program is a ministry-approved specialized program that allows students to identify, explore, and refine post-secondary goals that match their interests, skills and talents. Students join an SHSM program in grade 11 and grade 12 while working towards their Ontario Secondary School Diploma (OSSD). Students can earn an SHSM accreditation regardless of their post-secondary pathway: apprenticeship training, college, university or workplace.

Watch this video to learn more about SHSM
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Why join your school’s SHSM Program?

Pursuing an SHSM can help students:

  • customize their high school education to suit their interests and talents
  • develop specialized knowledge and skills
  • earn credits that postsecondary educational institutions and employers recognize
  • gain sector-recognized certification and career-relevant training
  • identify, explore and refine career goals and make informed decisions about their future
  • remain flexible, with the option to shift between pathways, should their goals and plans change
  • transition after graduation to apprenticeship training, college, university or the workplace
  • students receive the SHSM Red Seal on their diploma when they:
    - complete a specific bundle of 8-10 courses in the student's selected field
    - earn industry certifications like First Aid and CPR qualifications
    - gain important skills on the job through cooperative education placements

Graduating with an SHSM

Students who successfully complete an SHSM program will receive:

  • an Ontario Secondary School Diploma with an embossed SHSM Red Seal
  • an SHSM record card documenting their achievement
  • formal recognition on their Ontario Student Transcript

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For more information:

Please contact your school’s guidance counsellor or the SHSM consultant, Stephanie Luchesa at 905-890-1221 ext. 24530 or​.

More detailed information about SHSMs can be found at

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